AN award-winning lecturer from Wrexham has said that allowing students to embrace their Welsh culture and heritage is the key his college’s success.
Marcus Thomas, who has been a lecturer at Coleg Cambria – formerly Yale College – for the past 17 years, was awarded a Pearson Award for Further Education Lecturer of the Year at an awards ceremony in London on Sunday.
Mr Thomas, originally from Rhos, has taught art and design at the college’s Wrexham campus and has been involved in a host of projects including Welsh blankets – made by the students – which have won prizes at the Eisteddfod and been purchased by the National Museum of Wales for permanent display.
Mr Thomas said he was ‘incredibly proud’ to represent the college and felt the award represented the pinnacle of his long career.
“It is fantastic regonition for the work we do here at the college and it is great for further education in the area”, he said.
“There is outstanding work going on at the college and we are trying to give the young adults transferable skills for their future academic life and life in general.
“In the art and design sector we are striving to give the students the best education both vocationally and academically and the applicable skills for whichever area of work they go in to.
“We’ve tried to teach the students about their Welsh heritage and culture and projects such as the textiles they created inspired by a day in Froncysyllte helps them to feel proud about where they come from.
“They learn a lot from their local culture and places like Rhos, where I herald from, are rich in Wrexham’s history – we hope the students can express this through their textiles work.”
Mr Thomas, who now lives in Maerdry, near Corwen, collected his award at an awards ceremony in London on Sunday which is set to be broadcast on BBC2 this Sunday at 5.15pm.
Celebrity broadcaster Esther Rantzen presented Mr Thomas with his award.
He added: “It was really strange with it being filmed for TV but there were some really cool people around and I enjoyed being there.”